World Series

Mets pound Gerrit Cole, beat Yankees in first game of Subway Series

Mets pound Gerrit Cole, beat Yankees in first game of Subway Series

NEW YORK — The temperature is steadily rising at Citi Field.

The red-hot Mets scorched four home runs off Yankees ace Gerrit Cole in the Subway Series opener Tuesday night, beating their crosstown rivals 9-7 to win their 10th game in their last 12 tries and move to 14-6 in June.

A sellout crowd of 42,824 that included celebrities, athletes and quite a few fans in Grimace costumes saw a thrilling contest that nearly saw the Yankees come back from a 9-1 deficit.

The Mets homered twice in both the second and fourth innings, chasing Cole from the game after four. Not to be outdone, Aaron Judge hit a grand slam off right-hander Reed Garrett in the eighth, bringing the Yankees (52-29) back to within two.

Austin Wells’ pinch-hit RBI single off left-hander Danny Young in the top of the eighth cut the Mets' lead to 9-3. The Mets needed three pitchers to get through the inning, with Adam Ottavino starting it and Garrett ending it.

Garrett converted the save (four) with a much easier ninth inning.

Mark Vientos hit two home runs for the second multi-homer game of his career and his first of the season. Brandon Nimmo extended his hitting streak to 10 games with his 12th homer of the season and Harrison Bader hit his fifth against his former team.

It was the most home runs given up by Cole since he allowed five to the Minnesota Twins on June 9, 2022. The right-hander took the loss (0-1), giving up six earned runs on seven hits, walking four and striking out none.

Left-hander David Peterson was erratic and inefficient, but limited the damage overall.

He loaded the bases to start the game before striking out the next three. However, Peterson threw 27 pitches in the first inning, setting him up for a short outing.

Juan Soto led off the fifth inning by taking a 1-2 slider from Peterson over the right-center-field fence to make the score 6-1. The lefty got one more out before walking Gleyber Torres and Alex Verdugo. The Mets then brought in right-hander Dedniel Nuñez (1-0) to face J.D. Davis.

The newly-minted Yankee grounded into a 5-4-3 inning-ending double play.

Peterson limited the damage to only one earned run on three hits and struck out eight, but five walks and two hit batters pushed his pitch count up to a point where the Mets had to take him out after 4 1/3.

It left a lot of ground for a shorthanded bullpen to cover, but the Mets (38-39) gave the relief group some breathing room with three runs in the eighth.

Jeff McNeil and Bader both singled off former Mets right-hander Phil Bickford and stole second. With one out, Torres booted a ground ball by Nimmo into right field. Torres now leads all second baseman with 12 errors.

The Yankees went to Michael Tonkin, who beat Bickford for the last spot in the Mets’ opening day bullpen this year.

J.D. Martinez hit an RBI double over the head of Judge in center field. A fly ball by Pete Alonso scored another one, making it 9-1 in favor of the Mets.

Those runs ultimately proved to be crucial.

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